Busted: Bankers and The Global Economy

January 29, 2009

Unemployment Chills U.S. Economy

Filed under: banking — Tags: , , , , , , , , , — digitaleconomy @ 10:06 pm

unemployedInitial claims for state unemployment insurance benefits increased to a seasonally adjusted 588,000. That number is actually larger and growing by the day. For example, an assortment of companies across various industries announced more than 100,000 job cuts. Media publicity is calling the job losses the worst since 1945. Last year, the U.S. lost more than 2.6 million jobs. This year, Digital Economy is projecting at least 4 million in U.S. job losses based on current evaluation of the economic crisis and the inability to stem the tide of the recession.

More and more Americans are continuing to draw unemployment instead of finding employment. The curtailing of basic economic activity has great repercussions as the swath of unemployment grows. “If people aren’t coming to work, then they aren’t buying gas, they’re not stopping by the store or the pharmacy and they aren’t going to local eateries,” stated Tennessee Chamber of Commerce board member Susan Meece.

Wall Street firms like Standard and Poors long for the appearance of economic healing so that Wall Street can get on with the business of continuing to loot the economy and reaping corporate and investor profits. You always hear a mindlessly optimistic edge from their economists, who are little more than profiteering cheerleaders that hope to ignite a flurry of economic activity and profitaking on Wall Street in the name of business expedience. Right now, the reality is otherwise.

unemployment3What is worse, many are settling for underemployment or part-time work in an effort to make ends meet. This doesn’t account for fixed expenses like house payments, auto payments and child support. To make matters worse, many states are far behind on processing the unemployment payments, resulting in additional risk of the recipients losing what assets they have including housing. Some states are reported to be experiencing a backlog of more than 3 weeks waiting time before the first check is received. This reality place heavy stress on an already stressful situation, especially where other family members like children are concerned.

Because of record energy costs last year, energy rates in most states are at record levels without hope of reprieve for the average citizen. Electric companies have been granted record rate increases and are now enjoying a bonanza during a time when other energy costs have dropped and stabilized. Still, no effort is being made to adjust electric rates. Instead, federal grants are being made to municipalities to help citizens keep their electricity on.

unemployment4The recent government stimulus is designed to cover the intensive needs of federal and state government now. Jobs and promotion of economic activity is not the priority of recent legislation. A band-aid approach is preferred. Apparently, economic stimulus is now considered to be government giveaways and federal programs. While covering those in need is commendable, it does little to directly assist the ailing economy beyond supporting the current safety net for displaced workers and the disadvantaged. ~ E. Manning

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